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Part of Your World: ‘The Little Mermaid’ Wing of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort Opens September 15

Jennifer Fickley-Baker

by , Editorial Content Manager, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, which immerses guests in the stories of “Cars,” “Finding Nemo” and “The Lion King,” will celebrate the opening of “The Little Mermaid” courtyard this Saturday, September 15.

I recently had the opportunity to stay in the “Cars” courtyard for my son’s birthday, and the level of detail our Imagineers went to to recreate the places and characters from these films is simply amazing! Not to mention that the family suites offer three different sleeping areas, two bathrooms, and a kitchenette – plenty of room for a birthday party!

Here’s a look inside each of the resort’s four courtyards.

Part of Your World: ‘The Little Mermaid’ Wing of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort Opens September 15

The Little Mermaid courtyard offers 864 standard rooms, which are decorated in perfect “Under the Sea” style. Outside, the area features large icons of Ariel, Flounder, Ursula, and King Triton, among others, plus a Flippin’ Fins pool.

The Finding Nemo courtyard offers 320 family suites, an impressive Big Blue Pool and a kids’ water play area. Character icons that can’t be missed here include Nemo, Marlin, Crush and Mr. Ray.

'Cars' Wing of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

If your kids loved the movie “Cars,” this is a not-to-be-missed trip through Radiator Springs. The Cars courtyard offers 480 family suites, and on your journey to your room, you’re sure to pass the Cozy Cone Motel, Tow Mater Towing & Salvage, the Wheel Well Motel and other nods to the film.

The Lion King courtyard, which offers 320 family suites, allows guests to embark on a journey through Africa with Simba and friends. Here guests can visit Pride Rock, watch Timon and Pumbaa dance “hakuna matata” style across a log bridge, and more.

Which area of the resort looks most intriguing to you? Tell us in the “comments” section below!


  • I am so torn on where to stay on our upcoming trip! We’ve already booked into Animal Kingdom, but my two year old is obsessed with Cars so we’re thinking of switching to the Cars wing at Art of Animation! Decisions, decisions!

  • We will be there tomorrow!!!

  • We just saw this couple days ago. They were still painting some things and touching up the Ursula. It’s pretty amazing to see those characters extremely large!

  • Stayed here overnight last week. Very cool themed rooms with a great BIG pool (can you say BIG)- If you have small children this IS the destination place to stay.

  • We have 6 children for a total party of 8 with my husband and I. Does the Art of Animation have ajoining rooms to accomodate our large family?

  • Just booked vacation for art of animation resort for spring break with my family.

    • That’s great to hear. Have a blast!!

  • I love the Art of Animatinon Restort!At first when I saw them building it I thought It was a Super hero resort.But this year we were staying in the 80’s section of Pop Century Restort,and I saw it!It is amazing!Good Job all who worked on it.

  • Really want to stay at the new AoA but we are 1 guest over the limit for a suite. Would love a suite and single but since they are in seperately areas of the resort, that isn’t really going to be a viable option for a family vacation.

  • That statue of Ursula give me the creeps! And the Ariel statue is stunningly beautiful. If Ursula wasn’t scary and Ariel beautiful, then it wouldn’t be true to the movie! Great job Imagineers and Disney construction workers on a beautiful resort!

  • We’ll be at the LM section for the Holidays and we’re already jumping up and down in anticipation!

  • My family will be there on Oct. 1-5! Can’t wait to take pictures of the hotel! We have reservation at the Cars though, I hope they let us switch to the Mermaid since my daughter Mia is turning 7 and she loves Ariel!

  • Was looking forward to a single, and was starting to be disappointed that, being a singles wing, it was going to be classic Pop/All-Stars style exterior-door rooms, instead of the new suite-building design.
    But the picture shows the big Ariel statue in front of what looks like a big interior-door room with hallways like the others. Thought the Mermaid wing was all singles–Is that a singles building as well, or are there suites?

    (Also I have trouble getting around, and was worried that being the “last” of the wings, it might be furthest in back from the lobby and/or bus stop. Is there more than one stop for the wings? A complete site map online?)

  • We will be there the 22nd-27th of Oct!!! My 4 year old red-headed daughter is beside herself with excitement! She has already packed every single Ariel toy, book, shirt, toothbrush (I could go on…) that she owns. Looking forward to a wonderful stay!

  • This looks amazing! We are staying at The Little Mermaid wing in October, because my daughter loves The Little Mermaid so much! We can not wait to see it all in person!! 🙂

  • We check in to the Little Mermaid section in 2 weeks! It’s so beautiful, and my daughter’s favorite princess is Ariel, so we are very excited to see it in person. 🙂

  • I had the chance to check out this resort when I just recently stayed at pop century. Needless to say, I already booked my next trip and we’re staying in the cars wing of Art of Animation!

    • It’s very cool!

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